image of Ben Franklin on US currency with a graduate's mortarboard on his head (Photo: Shutterstock)

Kimberly King was burnt out in her nursing career. Before COVID.  So she took on student debt to change careers — and was defrauded by what she says was a predatory online college. Now at age 56, she’s back 40 hours a week in her registered nurse job, and taking classes again to get a nurse practitioner degree.

“I had no choice but to go back to nursing, and seek an advanced degree in the same field I was trying to get away from, in order to pay my newly incurred debt,” says King. Between her own $72,000 in student debt now, and the approximately $25,000 in a parent PLUS loan she took out for her husband’s child’s education, King is one of more than 8 million Americans over the age of 50 who hold student debt — and just shy of being one of the 820,000 of them with student debt of $100,000 or more. In fact, there’s nearly one person over the age of 50 with that whopping amount of student debt for every person under age 35.

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